Shades Of Grey #5: The Big Red Machine

Kane is the World Heavyweight Champion.

I’ve been sitting on that fact for a week or two now, just thinking. Mulling it over, if you prefer. It doesn’t bother me, no, quite the opposite, if anything I’m bothered it took this long to put the strap back on him. But Kane is the champion, and the question is, how much better is Smackdown for it?

Kane is the definition of a company man. He was Issac Yankem, he was Fake Diesel, he dropped his first world title the night after winning it. He’s done everything, put over everyone, and been whatever they needed to be whenever they needed him to be it. He’s the kind of guy you have to figure will retire and go work backstage with the younger guys. I mean, I know nothing of the guy backstage, but that speaks volumes. He’s been in the company for the better part of twenty years, and for all the countless shoot interviews former workers have done, and all the bad mouthing they’ve unleashed on other talents, how many times have you heard Kane come up negatively?

On top of that though, the man can work! Sure, he’s a big man, and there are obvious limitations to the style, but he’s made a career out of working around them. I’ve seen him dive off the top rope, I’ve seen him dominate in ladder matches. I’ve seen him work as a monster heel and as one of the hottest babyfaces in the company. He went from burn victim in a mask, to unmasking with…..nothing wrong with him, and then set J.R. on fire. People got into it. Then when he went face again? People cheered for him. He’s one of those once in a life time workers who really honestly can do whatever they need him to do.

And right now that’s carry the strap.

Undertaker, Rey, and Punk are all hurt. Swagger, from what I’ve heard, actually had a decent run with the belt, but like any young gun given the title (Sheamus), you have to take it off of them and see how they handle the rematch phase, and then how they handle the build back up. If they can handle it and keep their heat, then you’ve got a star (again, Sheamus), and if they can’t, well, at least you learned quick that they either aren’t any good or need a lot more work (Orton).

And I mean, who else are they going to go with for the belt? Matt Hardy? I like Matt, but he’s never going to be Jeff. Sure, he can work a better ground game, but he doesn’t have the “it” factor. Even though he’s charismatic there’s just…..I dunno, there’s just something about Matt that always makes me go “Damn it, it’s not Jeff.”

Maybe they’d go with Christian, who curtain jerks for them despite being able to main event. Or Drew McIntyre who has built an entire gimmick on his complete and utter inability to actually win a match without some sort of Dusty finish. There’s always Kofi, but he’s much better off in the Shelton Benjamin role as IC champion who can bump. Maybe Dolph Zig…no, I’m not finishing that thought.

Even despite being the best man for the job, Kane is…the only man for the job. This roster was destroyed by the draft. I mean, counting on Rey Mysterio and The Undertaker to carry your main event? Really? These are two of the most consistently injured guys on the roster, between Rey’s knee and Taker’s….well, Taker always has something. They came out of the draft with Punk and Swagger as top heels, and with the losses of their faces they’ve got nada.

Wait, I forgot Big Show.

Anyway, they got nada. And with Kane you got a guy who can work face, heel, or tweener. And given the storyline with Undertaker? There’s an obvious “Kane did it” ending coming, and given how they let Kane sell it, it could be total gold. Let Taker return around Hell in a Cell or Survivor Series, work him into a program with Kane (working Kane heel), and feud them for a few months, drop the belt to Taker, and let them go from there. Sure, Kane would be a transitional champion, but one that holds the belt from July until October or November, which can be easily called a reward for his many years of hard work and loyal service.

I don’t know how much longer Kane has in him, and I do remember a few years ago there were rumors about an impending retirement….but obviously that wasn’t the case. Still, he can’t go forever, and he’s easily better off leaving while he’s still able to go to the best of his ability then when his skill deteriorate to leave him a shell of his former self. And something really tells me that he’s saved his money over the years too. He’s not going to be one of those guys working past their expiration date and tarnishing their own legacy. He’s going to go out on his own terms barring some sort of horrible injury, and that’s what he deserves….his terms, I mean, not the injury. No big injuries for Kane.

Then again, maybe I’m just a fan of seeing guys who I’ve been watching for years get a little love. I mean, again, Christian.

But this is about Kane.

And nobody deserves his spot more than he does. It’s fitting that he receive it, and in the end, I can only hope that they let him run with it past Summerslam.

Grey Scherl is the Head Editor at, as well as a Writer for You can follow him on for updates on all of his News and Columns, or e-mail with any questions or comments.

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